GP Geraint Hughes death 'may have been prevented'

Image source, Devon and Cornwall Police
Image caption,
Dr Geraint Hughes was killed by his wife Marion

The fatal stabbing of a family GP by his wife "may have been prevented", a report has found.

Geraint Hughes, 60, was stabbed through the heart with a kitchen knife by his wife Marion in November 2013 at their home near Truro, Cornwall.

She had been released from a mental health unit seven days before the killing.

A domestic homicide review said "more effective monitoring" could have played a part in preventing the killing.

Mrs Hughes, a former GP, had a "severe depressive disorder" and was "in all probability psychotic" around the time of the killing, said the report.

Dr Hughes' family said they agreed the death could have been prevented and hoped "lessons will be learned".

'Adored his wife'

In a statement, the family said there had been a "failure to identify delusional jealousy and the risk that posed".

The review, compiled by Safer Cornwall, found Mrs Hughes "engaged in controlling behaviour, by requiring unreasonable levels of reassurance" about her husband's whereabouts and activities.

In the report, the family said Dr Hughes "adored his wife and did all he could to protect and care for her".

Mrs Hughes was admitted to the mental health unit at Bodmin Hospital on 17 October 2013 after she was found sitting on the edge of a cliff. She was released on 8 November.

At an appraisal on 14 November, the day before the killing, a junior doctor said Mrs Hughes' readmission to the mental health unit would "not likely make a difference".

The report concluded the killing was "not predictable" given the information available at the time.

But it said "compliance with medication, more effective monitoring, and improved risk assessment" may "have played a part in the possible prevention of the killing".

The review concluded the "indicators of domestic abuse" were not recognised and recommended training to "highlight the fact that domestic abuse may be perpetrated by women on men".

The Cornwall Partnership NHS Foundation Trust, responsible for mental health care in the county, acknowledged there were "areas where care fell below the expected standards".

Mrs Hughes admitted manslaughter on grounds of diminished responsibility in June 2014 and was detained in hospital.

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